Happy Friday to you.
Let's finish this preview for the 2020 MLB season off right? We have saved perhaps the most exciting, an intriguing story line of the off season for last.
We have, for those of you that haven't tuned into the prior streams this week, I have gone through the entire MLB division by division, and this is the last one.
So we're left with E A L West.
Let's go right into it.
For those of you that aren't aware, you might be living in a box, especially if you pay attention to sports at all.
But the Houston Astros, world serious champions in 2017 and several years running here, world Siris representatives at least were caught cheating and admitted to it.
A lot of teams steal signs to gain an advantage, and that's just kind of, ah, unwritten rule in baseball. It's accepted.
Every team does it.
But Houston took it to a new level hand, basically were tipping pitches and giving signals for every time that there were breaking balls or off speed pitches from the picture.
So it basically made it obvious as to what they were going what kind of pitch they were going to get, and it made it easy to hit.
I mean, you're a professional ballplayer.
If you know exactly what's coming, it's gonna be easy to smash.
And so now the question mark is there.
This team is full of a ton of talent.
But was some of that due to the cheating, or were they really talented players that got just a little bit more of a push from the scandal? Now there's still speculation on as to whether they just did this during home games and, you know, as opposed to away games, et cetera, et cetera.
But nobody really knows.
So all we can go off of is that we know they cheated.
They admitted to it.
The disheartening thing and the frustrating thing is a baseball fan is that the commissioner didn't do anything.
They got punished with a few draft picks taken away.
But these guys aren't even get suspended for any games there.
Coach took all the brought forum and I just I don't know what to expect, so I'll just tell you what I'm thinking of and we'll see if it matches up.
Houston just so happens to be the first team we're gonna discuss for this ale less preview.
They are coming back with pretty much the same team as they had last year, except for one major change.
And that is, they lost.
Probably the best pitcher in baseball.
He's over to the Yankees now because they had the most money to pay him.
And so now they're left with that void in the starting pitching rotation.
But they have pretty much brought everybody else back, and even some of these young guys have a chance to prove themselves and improve.
And they could be even better than they were last year.
There's just so many unknowns with this team, but I am fascinated to see how this plays out.
I sent a tweet out. Maybe.
Gosh, I'd say early January late December on when all this was coming out and I said, I guarantee that this team is going to be much watch TV because opposing pitchers are going to start throwing at these guys and it's just inevitable.
If I was ESPN or Fox or any of the other big time networks that host baseball games on a weekly basis, I'd be putting the Astros on almost every slot because it is going to be very entertaining television tow watch.
A lot of people think baseball is boring, but I promise you, when Astros air pointing it will not be boring.
I predict we could have a record set for hit batsmen in a year.
I suspect we could have multiple pictures suspended, and I think knowing how the commissioner reacts to all things, I suspect there's going to be some drastic rule change halfway through the year to prevent some of this from happening because the commissioner is going to see really quickly that these teams are pretty ****ed about them cheating.
And I think that they're going to get beamed all over the place.
So it'll be interesting to see.
I don't know what the record is.
I'd have to look it up, but I would imagine, and I even wonder if there's Vegas odds here that they might set the all time record of hits back batsman, which means dugouts are gonna be clear in every other case, which is just awesome.
So I know it sucks.
Is a baseball fan knowing they cheated, but it is going to be so much fun watching these guys, and I do not have any rooting interest towards the Astros except for this.
So, unfortunately, my favorite team, the Reds don't play them this year.
I would've loved to have, especially if it was in Cincinnati.
I would have bought tickets that in a heartbeat, all right, I just would love to see that live.
But I apologize for the huge rant.
Let's move on, Thio the consistent theme of the week and that is previewing these teams.
So, like I said, they did lose Garrett Cole, and they're pretty much bringing everybody back.
Let's go down through this line up here.
George Springer, Jose Altuve A Michael Brantly, Alex Bregman, Uly Gourriel, Your Don Alvarez, Carlos Correa, Josh Red****, Martine Maldonado.
I see 1 to 2 weaknesses in this lineup.
I think if Josh Red**** struggles, we're going to see the stud hitting outfield prospect come up from Houston and ah, in Kyle Tucker.
And I think that if he takes over that spot, he's not gonna ruling.
He is a great hitter.
For those of you that don't know he's a I mean the guy just went off last year.
Look at his Triple A stats.
When you get a chance, it's It's pretty fascinating stuff.
And he didn't even crack the big league lineup last last year, and that should show you how stacked this team is.
So that being said, there's not many holes in the lineup.
But what I do see holes in potentially are the starting rotation.
Justin Verlander at the top.
Nothing to complain about their.
Is that Greinke at the top? Nothing complaint out there.
Lance McCullers Junior is coming back from Tommy John surgery, so there is no definitive innings limits or you know whether he's gonna be able to go the full season, especially if they go deep into the playoffs like they have the potential to do with the talent on this roster.
I could see them, you know, flirting, flirting with his innings limits here and there, and moving him in and out of the rotation to give him some rest.
They're also projecting Jose or Kiki and Josh James to round out the starting rotation at the moment, and by they I mean Ross resource with which is the source of these Lina Projective line ups that I've been previewing.
So that being said, if anything happens poorly for them this year, it's going to be something happened to that rotation, and they just don't have a ton of depth.
They do have one of the top pitching prospects in baseball Forest Whitley, who many thought was going to be up last year.
But he struggled, so there's a question mark surrounding him as to whether he'll be able to live up to the hype.
But if one of these guys towards the back end of the rotation struggles, I could see him making his way into that starting rotation.
Houston did finish 107 and 55 1 of the top records in the league last year, and I see a pretty similar season ahead for them this year.
I don't see a whole lot changing, even though they cheated.
I do see a ton of talent on this team and let's see, Biggest has them at 94 a half wins, which is, you know, almost gosh, that's a pretty big drop off of what they were last year.
But 94 a half wins is still a lot of wins, so I don't think I'm gonna touch this from a gambling perspective over under.
Just gonna let the season play out because, like I said, you just never know some of these hitters could go down with injuries, getting, you know, smoked with fastballs up and in.
Or, you know, they get hit it in on the hands from pitchers, pitching him inside and you know they break a hand or break a wrist.
There's just too many unknowns about this team going into the season that I don't want to touch this betting line.
But I do expect them to make the playoffs.
And they do have the talent to go to the World Series again.
Let's move on to team number two for the A L.
West Los Angeles Angels.
Now they have had quite the off season.
They haven't lost a whole lot of pieces, but they added one of the best hitters in baseball who had one of the best seasons in baseball last year.
Anthony Rendon from the World Siris, winners of last year Washington Nationals.
He's projected to fit right in the middle of that lineup, and it'll be pretty fascinating and fun tow.
Watch him and Mike Trout be very close to each other in the line up there at the top.
They also brought in a few pictures.
You know, Julio Tehran is a new addition.
Dylan Bundy, over from the Orioles, is a new addition.
These guys aren't great pictures by any means, but they are an improvement.
And that is what they needed because this team was just absolutely decimated with pitching problems last year, injuries included.
They did lose Garrett Richards, the talented arm.
We discussed one who got moved to the Padres, but they did add two arms.
What should help them? And I like the additions that they made to the offense.
And keep in mind that Justin Upton, who is out last year, is going to be back this year healthy.
So that should be pretty interesting to see him added to the outfield situation.
They're in the Angels as well.
Let's go top to bottom here in the lineup, Tommy lost.
Ella is projected to be the starting second baseman.
I could see a platoon situation between he and David Fletcher, so keep an eye out on that.
They have Mike Trout's slated at second.
Best player in baseball. If you ask me.
Anthony Rend own in 1/3 Shohei Otani.
That's the other element that we didn't discuss.
So she Shohei Otani, is an absolute rarity.
Came over from Asia a couple years back, One of the most talented baseball players on the planet.
He is one of the few, if not the only, that complaint both ways.
He is a great pitcher and he's actually exceeded expectations.
You know, with his bat as well.
He was thought of as this elite pitcher and not a great bat, but man, he has proved us all wrong, and he is one of the best power hitters in just all around talented hitters in the L.
So the element about him that we didn't discuss his last year, you know, he had had quite a bit of arm injuries and just issues to kind of steer clear of, so they didn't pitch him in all last year.
He was battling back from that injury and so this year they are going to bring him back as a pitcher.
So it'll be interesting to see how he factors into that line up.
You know, how many days of the week does he hit? He's probably not going to hit the day before or the day after he pitches.
They're speculating that he might not even be in the rotation until around nay, just because they want to ease him in and not give him a huge innings capacity, and they wanna limit him a little bit there.
So that is going to be one of the more interesting things to take a look out for this year for the Angels, but it just makes them so fun and interesting.
Thio try to predict this year.
Last year, the Angels finished 72 90 and this year Vegas has them at 85 a half wins with all the additions they've made.
So I don't really know if I want to touch them from a betting perspective because it could go either way.
But I like the idea of them getting better and improving and just making it more fun because I want to see my trout in the playoffs.
I'm tired of this guy's prime getting wasted because the front office what the Angels aren't putting pieces around him to win and they have the money to do it.
It just doesn't make any sense.
So as a pure baseball fan that enjoys watching my trout point, I've loved the CME in the playoffs, and hopefully that is what we get this year with the the improvements that they made.
This 85 a half wins is going to be on the border of making the playoffs, and I just don't know where to go with this team.
So I don't feel confident.
Either way, you want to go betting, so I'm gonna leave this team alone.
Let's go to the Oakland Athletics.
Oakland last year finished the year at 97 65 great season playoff team.
I don't see a whole lot being different this year.
They have a lot of the same players coming back and they do have a ton of young pitching talent that is coming up from miners.
And there's just going to be, um ah lot too Ah, lot of uneasiness in unsettled situations that we're gonna have to monitor.
There's really no definitive conclusions we can make from this team, except that they have a ton of talent and it seems like All these guys played well together, and they love playing together that they have a pretty good defense.
Pretty good offense, pretty good pitching, pretty good bullpen.
So there's just not a whole lot of weaknesses to this team.
So while they don't have the huge name recognition, just keep in mind that they do have solid players up and down the lineup and solid pictures up and down that rotation.
So there's just not a lot of weaknesses, and that's why I expect another big year.
They are projected at 89 a half wins.
I like the over I.
I do feel pretty confident in that one.
I like the over here.
There's no reason why they should diminish their win total that much more from last year.
They have a lot of the same guys.
Let's just go up and down this line up.
Marcus Simeon, UH, projected a leadoff Ramon Soriano, the stud center fielder.
And if you got if you haven't watched highlights of this guy, watch his fielding highlights.
This guy has a rocket arm.
He could unload it from the warning track and get the home plate, and he just he's a really fun and exciting guy to watch, and he's got some hitting talent as well.
In some speed out of the lineup, you got Matt Chapman projected 1/3 power back stud third baseman, great fielder again.
We'll probably one of the best third baseman defensively in the league, and he's become one of the better offense of third baseman as well.
Matt Olsen, one of the best power hitters in the league.
This guy hit over 30 home runs, and he missed like the first month and 1/2 2 months due to like a broken arm.
I believe it had something to do with a broken bone in his arm because I had a move.
My fantasy team, of course.
So I remember it pretty vividly, but he came back and didn't miss a beat.
You know a lot of people, when they get they have these arm injuries or shoulder injuries.
They lose a lot of their power.
And that just isn't what wasn't the case with him last year.
And I expect more of the same this year, almost guaranteed.
Lock it in 30 to 35 home runs, if not more, if he stays healthy So then we have Mark Anna, who is an underrated guy again.
A lot of these guys for Oakland seem to be under the radar for some reason, but they're just really good ballplayers.
They may not have an elite skill here there, but they're just overall good talents.
So then we have Chris Davis power hitter, Probably.
I mean, right up there with Mad Olsen, if not more power.
And he did struggle a bit last year, but that was due to his hip injury.
Pretty much derailed him most of last season.
So I expect the bounceback season from him.
And then you kind of have some if you guys here, down towards the back end.
Not great. Sean Murphy.
So we don't really know what to expect from him.
And then second base is projected Tony camp.
But they also have, you know, minor league prospects in the wait here.
Ah, in Jorge Matteo.
And, um why am I blanking? Ah Barreto Franklin Barreto.
So they have those guys in the wings waiting.
So if Tony Kemp struggles at all, I could easily see those guys bringing in at second base And if anything happens, the market.
Simeon, you know some some of those guys could move over to shortstop is well, so there's just a lot of fluctuation down towards that bottom of the lineup, I expect, but overall pretty good hitting lineup and some decent bats on the bench as well.
So if they run in injuries, they shouldn't have any issues at all.
Let's preview this starting rotation here.
My fire's who? It's very interesting that we are, Ah, discussing the Ale West.
The dynamic for those of you that don't know he is essentially the one that broke the news in spread All the rumors about the Astros that ended up becoming true because he used to pitch for the Astros and he's the one that stood up and made the claim that they were cheating, and that's what started this whole thing.
So what makes it even more interesting is that he's in the same division as the Astros, so that is a pretty interesting dynamic Whenever he takes the mound against the Asher's, I'd be interested to see what happens there, but let's keep going down here.
They have Sean Minaya, uh, Frank, Frankie Montas Jesus, Elizardo, Chris Bassett.
And they also have a J puck in the wings here, a minor league pitching prospect.
They just have a lot of good young talent, but not a ton of innings that these guys have pitched.
So I could easily see them at some point, going toe like a six man rotation, maybe, or bringing in some minor leaguers here and there to spell these guys.
Give him some take some starts off.
Maybe, you know, just rest up their arm because I do expect them to go to the playoffs.
And I think they're expecting to make the playoffs.
Ah, that's their aspiration, at least, so they're probably going to be pretty careful with some of these guys.
But these young pitchers are going after step up.
If they want to compete again this year.
You know this division is improving all around.
You know, a lot of these teams have made some good improvements over the off season, so it's going to take collective effort here from this pitching staff and it's gonna take some guys stepping up in big spots.
Some of these young guys to really do something that they've never done before, But they have the talent to do it, and I believe in this team.
So I would take again.
I would take the over on on the wind total at what is it, 89 a half, and I think we are okay to move forward.
The Seattle Mariners.
They are a stagnant team with not a lot to talk about, so I will make this one quick.
They haven't made a lot of improvements over the off season, and they haven't lost a lot.
And they have a ton of young guys that probably nobody's heard of.
But they are going to have some talented guys coming up.
So it'll be interesting to see if they exceed expectations or whether they need toe.
You know, overhaul this roster again and try to collect more assets.
But there's just not a whole lot toe like from an offense for offensive perspective or from the pitching staff, and I expect them to be one of the bottom teams in the league.
In fact, Vegas agrees, because they have him at 67 a half wins last year, they finished with what 68 wins so I'm gonna let this one go.
I'm not gonna, you know, looking to be placed in any bets on this team.
But I just wanted to make you guys aware.
I do expect them to finish last in this division, and there's really not a whole lot to discuss here.
So I am just going to move straight on to the last team of the division, the Texas Rangers.
They have made some improvements here, mostly to the pitching staff and another thing to keep in.
Maybe it's an improvement for them.
They are switching stadiums.
They're gonna have a brand new stadium.
It's gonna be a dome.
So the old Texas Stadium was known for.
Obviously, the humidity and the heat in the summer time in Texas is unbearable.
But that makes the ball fly out of the ballpark.
So that was known as being an extremely hitter friendly ballpark.
What the rumor has it for the new stadium, especially with the dome to control the climate conditions there, that the ball might not fly out of the ballpark as much.
And I think they had that in mind this off season when they started making some of these moves because they really did go pitching heavy on their moves.
And I think that they did that because they knew that some of these pictures could be effective in this ballpark and they had the bats to maybe compete.
So I thought that they did a good job this offseason knowing that that was probably going to be their best path to improvement, and that's exactly what they did.
Let's go down the line up here.
Um, they did lose Hunter Pence in the outfield, but they gained Cory Clubber, Kyle Gibson and Jordan Lyles to the pitching staff.
So, like I mentioned earlier, I do love the improvements there.
While they're not great pictures, they they just are such an improvement on what they had going last year ever get, you know, every fifth day, you know, some no name was taking the mound that you really didn't trust it all on, especially in that hitter friendly ballpark.
It just was not a good mix, so I do love the improvements they made there.
Let's go and preview there one through nine.
Shin Soo Choo, still going at it strong, still a pretty good player in his elder age, and you'll notice the theme to this lineup is, well, they do have an odd mixture of some veteran guys that have been doing it for a while and some really young, talented guys.
So I kind of like the mixture there.
Good clubhouse presence with the talent and the youth that they need to really take that next step.
So, like I said, Shin Soo Choo projected to bat leadoff Elvis Andrews projected about second Joey Gallo easily top five power hitters.
I feel like I've named three out of the top five power hitters in this division in the entire league already, and I probably said that quite a bit, but I mean it with Joey Gallo.
I mean, this guy is just has unlimited power, and if he could just stay healthy for an entire season, would probably hit 50 bombs.
But he has had a problem with injuries in the past, So that's the unknown there.
Ah, let's keep going down this line up here they have Danny Santana Baton forth.
I'm not sure about that.
He could easily move down or towards the top.
He's got some speed to add to that line up, and he's an interesting that toe.
Look out for them.
They have Willy Calhoun projected about fifth, who's a very talented outfielder, not defensively, but he's got a lot of pop in the back, so he's He's a pretty fun prospect to look out for.
He did come up last year, is a rookie, and he excelled.
So I'm looking for another pretty good season from him.
And then you got these veterans that we discussed here towards the back end.
Todd Frazier X read the Todd father looking to play started third base and then rude Nando Door at second base.
Robinson Torino's at catcher and then Ronald Guzman rounding out first base.
And I would like to mention a name here showed on the bench.
He's not a very good defensive guy, but he does have some talent in the bat, and he's got some speed.
So there's been, ah, few rumors in the off season that he could make his way in here.
Maybe a second base.
Maybe they moved in the first base, maybe plays outfield.
He has a He could even play third base, and they moved Todd Frazier to first.
So this lineup has a potential to go in many different directions here.
So keep that in mind as well for you.
Fancy players don't want to give away any secrets, but just keep that in mind.
If you're taking guys from Texas, the only guys that are you know, stalwarts of this lineup that will is almost like a lock of guaranteed time is probably to Elvis Andrus, Joey Gallo, Danny Santana and maybe Willy Calhoun.
But all these guys down towards the bottom could fluctuate any given day.
So keep that in mind.
Let's move to the pitching staff, which I said was improved there.
Cory Clubber, who they brought over from the Cleveland Indians, is going to act as their ace.
Mike Minor, is going to probably be their number to either that or Lance Lynn.
It's showing number three, but he could slot into the number two slot.
He had a good year last year.
Kyle Gibson, who they brought over from Minnesota Twins.
He's got some promise.
He's always been one of those arms that is just middle of the road.
Doesn't hurt you too much, doesn't help you too much, but he's one of the guys that he's just a good guy to have towards the back of the rotation.
He normally pitches at least 170 innings, so he's got some consistency there.
And then it looks like Jordan Lyles is going to round out the bottom part of that rotation.
So a lot of new faces here.
Ah, lot of new elements to the entire club, including that stadium.
Ah, last year, just that kind of give you guys an update or just to give you an idea of how it went last year, 70 eight and 80 four was the record last year.
It looks like 79 a half wins for Vegas.
I could see them going over, though.
Like I said, these improvements are enough to put them over the 81 mark.
I think I don't think that they're going to have and just outrageously good year.
But I do see some promise here and I could see them cracking 500 or maybe a little above 500.
So that being said, I kind of do see a path to the over.
I don't love it, though, so don't go to too heavy.
If you if you are looking to bet overall.
Ah, pretty interesting division, particularly the Astros.
And the Mike fires situation there with the Oakland A's just so many interesting dynamics here, top to bottom of this division improvements, free agent acquisitions, the big cheating scandal.
Just a ton to look out for and to be excited about.
And that's why I wanted to save these guys toe last.
So that does it for the MLB previews for 2020.
We have gone through every single division this week.
We are now through them, and we can focus on a little more intricacies of the misconceptions on baseball stats.
I'm going to touch on that a little bit more, probably this weekend or early next week.
We're going to get into MLB futures props next week at some point as well.
So look out for that for you betting folks.
We're going to look at over under team totals and a L and N, L, M, V P and Cy Young props to see what kind of value we can look at four pitchers and hitters.
You know, when you're betting those envy peas and Cy Young, she never really want to take the top odds.
You kind of want to find that diamond in the rough to make it worth your while.
So we're going to dig a little deeper and see what we can find here.
See if we can give you guys some good place, some promising place heading into the 2020 season and otherwise, thank you guys for joining me.
For those of you that don't know me, my name is Jesse Clark.
I live around the Dayton, Ohio, area.
We looking forward to this baseball season, but I'm also looking forward to talking some other sports here coming in the next few days.
There's a big UFC card this Saturday night UFC to 48.
I will probably be going live tomorrow afternoon to discuss that briefly and some college basketball season's heating up.
You know, March Madness is right around the corner.
Gonna have conference championship games a week from this weekend.
So going to be talking a little bit more about those things as well.
So take keep a lookout on that.
I do appreciate all you guys.
Thank you for tuning in.
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I can't stress this enough.
How much I thank you guys for tuning in.
I will be back tomorrow afternoon.
Stay tuned for some UFC talk.
Love you guys. Happy Friday.
Have a good weekend.